Kim Tenhunen is a partial paraplegic who has been in a wheelchair since she fell off a horse when she was a teenager. She lives in a home located in Sooke, BC. On May 11, 2011, while her mother Beverly Tenhunen was visiting Kim’s home, Beverly slipped and fell on the ramp entry. During her fall, Beverly hurt her knee and sued her daughter for damages resulting from her injuries. The reasons of Mr. Justice Johnston of the BC Supreme Court were delivered on January 9, 2015 and can be found here.
Kim moved into her home in Sooke in 1998 and at the time there was no wheelchair access to her home making it difficult for her to get in and out. Kim’s landlord agreed that if Kim wanted to make modifications to the home to make it wheelchair accessible, she could. Kim built the ramp based on her limited knowledge of the ramp requirements.
On the day in question, Beverly was unable to use the stairs and was forced to use the ramp. The ramp was wet, steeper than building code requirements, and did not have treading to stop pedestrians from slipping.
Although the ramp had a handrail on the inside of the ramp, Beverly had chosen to walk on the outside due to debris.Due to Beverly’s choice to walk on the outside of the ramp, Justice Johnston apportions liability 50% to each Beverly and Kim. Beverly is awarded 50% of $250,182.38 in damages.
As the temperatures continue to plummet and snow continues to accumulate across Canada, the dangers for a potential slip-and-fall accident increase dramatically. From iced over sidewalks, walk ways and ramps to streets and highways, the inclement weather caused by winter weather can cause a number of problems.
Richter Trial Lawyers would like to remind everyone to remain safe and cautious while walking and on the road throughout the winter. Make sure you wear proper footwear and drive at a consistent pace leaving enough room behind every vehicle in case of sudden stops. If you are walking on the sidewalk, take your time and be aware of your surroundings.
A slip-and-fall accident can occur anywhere at any time, it is important to seek legal representation when you are potentially harmed in an accident especially on a commercial or residential property.
There are a number of factors and analysis that goes into each liability case, such as where the accident occurred to the details of the experience. Contact Richter Trial Lawyers today at 604.264.5550 or send an email to [email protected]